James Earl Jones Net Worth 2022: Star Wars Salary Debacle!


James Earl Jones is an American actor who was born on January 17, 1931. For his performances in film, television, and theatre, he has been called “one of the most renowned and varied actors in America” and “one of the greatest actors in American history.”

Jones is one of the few performers with a six-decade-long career to have won an Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony (EGOT). Jones’s voice has been lauded as “a passionate basso profondo that has added gravel and gravitas” to his endeavors, which include live-action acting, voice acting, and commercial voice-overs.


Name James Earl Jones
Profession Actor, Voice Actor, Soldier
Date of Birth 17 January 1931
Age 91 years
Height 1.87 m

Early Years of James Earl Jones

James Earl Jones was born in Arkabutla, Mississippi on January 17, 1931. James Earl was mostly reared by his grandparents on a farm in Jackson, Michigan when his father left the family to pursue an acting career in New York and Los Angeles. Jones arrived in Michigan during the Great Migration.

James Earl Jones Net Worth

Jones experienced speech problems shortly after leaving Mississippi. Initially, he refused to talk at all, keeping completely silent until entering high school. Later, a teacher assisted him in overcoming his stammer, but he still exhibits minor stuttering symptoms.

Jones went to the University of Michigan as a pre-med major after graduating from high school. However, the structure afforded by the military enticed him to join the Reserve Officer Training Corps.

Later, he abandoned his ambition to become a physician and attended the University of Michigan’s School of Music, Theatre, and Dance to study acting.

He wanted to do something fun before he was drafted into service during the Korean War, as he did not know if he would ever return from the battle.

After a brief term as a stagehand, James Earl Jones was commissioned as a second lieutenant following the conclusion of the Korean War. He attended Ranger School and then the Colorado cold weather training command. Before being dismissed, he ultimately attained the rank of first lieutenant.

The Career of James Earl Jones

In Michigan, James Earl Jones began his career in the theatre. He appeared in a staging of “Othello” in 1955. This was the beginning of Jones’ long-term participation in Shakespeare performances, and by the 1960s he had become a notable Shakespearean actor.

Jones’s cinematic career began in the 1960s with appearances in films such as “Dr. Strangelove” and “The Comedians.” Then, he became well-known for starring in the stage and film adaptations of “The Great White Hope.”

Jones accepted a vocal part as Darth Vader in the 1977 film “Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope” after performing in films like “The Man” and “Claudine” The actor subsequently repeated his role in “Empire Strikes Back” and “Return of the Jedi.”

In the 1980s, Jones starred in a variety of blockbuster films, including “Conan the Barbarian,” “Coming to America,” and “Field of Dreams.” Throughout the 1990s, he acted in a number of successful films, including “The Hunt for Red October,” “Patriot Games,” and “Clear and Present Danger,” among others.

During this time, his voice acting career advanced, and he accepted the role of Mufasa in “The Lion King.” During this time, he also starred in television shows like Gabriel’s Fire, Roots: The Next Generations, and Heat Wave.

Over time, more roles appeared on television programs such as “Law & Order,” “Will & Grace,” “Two and a Half Men,” “The Big Bang Theory,” and “The Simpsons.” Throughout the 2010s, Jones refocused his attention on theatre projects.

Relationships of James Earl Jones

In 1968, James Earl Jones married actress Julienne Marie as his first wife. Their four-year marriage ultimately ended in divorce. Jones wed another actress called Cecilia Hart in 1982. Together, they had one child before Hart’s death from ovarian cancer in 2016.

Net Worth of James Earl Jones

James Earl Jones is an American actor with a $40 million net worth according to celebritynetworth.com. Jones has had a long and famous career as a theatre, film, and voice actor, but he is perhaps best remembered for voicing Darth Vader in the original Star Wars trilogy.

James Earl Jones Net Worth

Throughout his career, James has won various prizes, including three Tony Awards, a Grammy Award, and an Emmy Award. Jones has remained a renowned character and remained quite active in the entertainment industry for decades.

Health Problems of James Earl Jones

Jones said in 2016 that he had been battling type 2 diabetes for most of his life.

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Star Wars Salary Debacle

When James Earl Jones was approached about voicing Darth Vader in the 1977 picture “Star Wars” (later retitled “A New Hope”), he was doubtful of the project’s potential.

Although he was promised a percentage of the film’s gross earnings, he chose to be paid in advance for his voice acting performance.

In the end, he spent a couple of hours in the studio recording his lines and was compensated a total of $7,000. This was a terrific deal for James, who was cash-strapped and needed money to buy groceries at the time. To put this into perspective, $7,000 in 1977 is equivalent to almost $27,000 now.

However, Jones’s decision to pay in cash turned out to be highly ill-advised. The 1977 Star Wars picture grossed over $775 million. This made it the third most profitable picture ever. Consequently, what did this signify for James Earl Jones? It indicates that he lost a substantial amount of money. There are tens of millions involved here.

Sir Alec Guinness, on the other hand, chose to accept a portion of box office earnings as part of his contract. This decision has resulted in almost $95 million in payouts to his estate and heirs to date. This demonstrates what Jones was missing out on.

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